Malcolm Turnbull says Australia will continue to share its intelligence with the United States in the wake of its rift with the UK over a series of leaks over the Manchester bombing.
The prime minister said Donald Trump was obviously disappointed by the leak which caused the UK to temporarily suspend intelligence sharing on the bombing and prompted UK prime minister Theresa May to confront Trump.
“Clearly this was a regrettable breach of security and you can see how disappointed president Trump was about it so regrettably these things do happen, but it was as regretted by President Trump as it was by Prime Minister May,” Turnbull told 3AW.
Asked if he trusted the United States, he said, “yes we do”.
In the wake of the Manchester bombings, Turnbull said there was currently a review of intelligence services which would include the issue of a dedicated minister for homeland security – a proposal supported in the past by the immigration minister, Peter Dutton, but opposed by attorney general George Brandis.
He said Australian security agencies had been very successful at thwarting terrorist plots but it was not possible to guarantee they could thwart every one.
Following Tony Abbott’s call for police to be given shoot-to-kill powers in terrorist situations, Turnbull said police already had such powers.
“Police have the ability to take such action as they need to, including to kill, in order to protect a human life,” he said.
“I think what has perhaps been confused here … is that there has been longstanding practice or protocol with sieges … of contain and negotiate.
“However, we are in different environment now, we have hostage takers who basically want to die and so a … different approach needs to be considered.”
He said those issues were also under review through the Australia-New Zealand counterterrorism committee.
On Thursday, Dutton said the best outcome for foreign fighters was that “they’re killed over there and they…